Greg Veis, YouTube Hunter: Slam Dunks, Take 2!

It's Wednesday morning, two and a half days since I returned from NBA All Star Weekend in Vegas, and I've still got a plaster-cast smile on my face. This is attributable to many things: my miraculous blackjack comeback against a 70 year-old dealer named Dawn, who consistently referred to herself as The Velvet Assassin; the fine dining; the substance abuse; the fact that I saw Kevin Garnett rock some low-level breakdance moves at a club in the Venetian; the temperatures that tripled those on the east coast; and closest to our purposes, that this year's Slam Dunk contest was the most
entertaining and collegial in years.

Like most kids born after Dr. J, despite some periods of being frustrated with the ease of the dunk (compared, say, to the supreme classiness of the finger roll), I've possessed a lifelong fascination with the maneuver. Saturday afternoons, when not spent practicing medical procedures on snails, were wasted away with dunk contests on the six-foot hoop in the backyard. (The YouTube Hunter, for the record, has never been blessed with height, jumping ability, or athletic talent.) My Jordan taking off from the free throw line poster
hung across the room from my Dominique windmill one. And on and on and on. I won't bore you with further personal details, but suffice it to say that in my book, dunks = nice.

So let's kick off the Tubes with a highlight reel of this year's contest, which while unable to boast any dunks that we'll be talking about for years, was damn high entertainment:

Now, here's NBA TV's list of the Top 10 best Slam Dunk Contest dunks. It's not a bad list, although I'd futz with their rankings, which seem tainted by the recency effect. Also, be ready to hear one of the best announcer calls in memory: "We need to get him
a get well card because he's sick right now."

Lastly, I'll leave you with four of my favorite dunks. Unfortunately, three of them were executed by UNC Tar Heels, and one of them is against Duke, but there¹s no use in letting bias get in the way of beauty.

I love the Vince Carter over the French guy dunk. That gets the
jingoism going every time. Anyway, feel free to leave your favorite dunks in
the comments section. Holla!

Carl Court, Getty Images
Is There a Limit to How Many Balls You Can Juggle?
Carl Court, Getty Images
Carl Court, Getty Images

In 2017, a juggler named Alex Barron broke a record when he tossed 14 balls into the air and caught them each once. The feat is fascinating to watch, and it becomes even more impressive once you understand the physics behind it.

As WIRED explains in a new video, juggling any more than 14 balls at once may be physically impossible. Researchers who study the limits of juggling have found that the success of a performance relies on a number of different components. Speed, a.k.a. the juggler's capacity to move their hands in time to catch each ball as it lands, is a big one, but it's not the most important factor.

What really determines how many balls one person can juggle is their accuracy. An accurate juggler knows how to keep their balls from colliding in midair and make them land within arm's reach. If they can't pull that off, their act falls apart in seconds.

Breaking a juggling world record isn't the same as breaking a record for sprinting or shot put. With each new ball that's added to the routine, jugglers need to toss higher and move their hands faster, which means their throws need to be significantly more accurate than what's needed with just one ball fewer. And skill and hours of practice aren't always enough; according to expert jugglers, the current world records were likely made possible by a decent amount of luck.

For a closer look at the physics of juggling, check out the video below.

Bowman Gum - Heritage Auctions, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons
11 Timeless Yogi Berra Quotes
Bowman Gum - Heritage Auctions, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons
Bowman Gum - Heritage Auctions, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

The great Yogi Berra—a 10-time World Series champion and three-time MVP—was one of baseball's best catchers, but he's remembered just as much for his wit and wisdom as his Hall of Fame career. Here are some of the quotes attributed to Yogi (who was born on May 12, 1925), even if he didn't always say them first.

1. "Always go to other people's funerals, otherwise they won't go to yours."

2. "The future ain't what it used to be." (Yogi later clarified, saying, "I just meant that times are different. Not necessarily better or worse, just different.")

3. "A nickel ain't worth a dime anymore."

4. "It ain't over 'til it's over."

5. "When you come to a fork in the road, take it." (See Quote Investigator)

6. "Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded." (See Quote Investigator)

7. "We have a good time together, even when we're not together."

8. "It's déjà vu all over again." (See Quote Investigator)

9. "Baseball is 90 percent mental. The other half is physical."

10. "I really didn't say everything I said."

11. "Then again, I might have said 'em, but you never know."


More from mental floss studios